Overwrought pulp heroics from the author of, most recently, The Earth-Shaker (1982). Dark warlock Kellory is committed to destroying the invading Thungoda, cruel barbarians who laid waste the northern kingdoms, killed his parents, and crippled his right hand when he was a boy. Accompanied by the beautiful princess Carthalla (""You seem always to be rescuing me from some peril or another""), Kellory searches in various odd and unpleasant nooks and crannies for the lost Book of Shadows, a sorcerer's tome reputedly containing a spell powerful enough to eradicate the Thungoda. And along the way he pauses to deliver, straight-faced, lines like ""I will embrace Death as a lover his bride. For life will hold no longer anything for me. . . ."" Solemn, pompous--and ghastly.